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Changing a custody order in North Carolina

As the lives and circumstances of divorced parents change, child custody orders may be changed also so that as you and your children grow and change, so can the terms of your child custody order. The law allows parents to request modifications to previously issued child custody and visitation orders in certain situations.

In order for a parent to have a child custody or visitation order modified there must have been a substantial change in circumstances that affects the best interests of the child. If such a substantial change exists, the parent may then file a motion for modification with the court that has jurisdiction over the child custody matter. The court with jurisdiction will normally be the court that issued the original order in the first place. Examples of substantial changes in circumstances may include such things as the arrest of a parent, abuse of the child, domestic violence that has occurred, a necessary relocation, a change in a child’s or a parent’s health or psychological status, or other such events that have a large impact on the child.


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